This is the second of four posts about the one-day retreat I recently attended here in Phoenix with Abbot Meletios Webber from the Monastery of St. John. The retreat was titled “Being Present in the Presence.”
The part of the second talk that really stood out to me was…
We do not need to get God’s attention. His attention is immediate and unavoidable. God is not there to punish us. He loves us so much that He cannot bear to take His eyes off of us. Intensity.
We do not need to get God’s attention. But we do need to get our attention. We must quiet our minds and pray. Prayer functions to sweep away the garbage.
Thinking and feeling are both from the head, which is broken. Heart and mind were one until the fall. The head took over and said, “I am the person.” Emotions are physical reaction to thought. Joy, light, life, peace are like feelings but come from the heart. These things do not have opposites in the kingdom. There is no death or darkness in the kingdom. Getting in touch with your feelings is not what we need. Scripture says that the heart is the place of the struggle. The patristic writers use the heart to mean the place of God’s presence in us.